Remembering Dave Hanlon BVMS(Hons) MVSc PhD DACT (Part 2)

He was a loyal, and amazingly supportive person; a perfect mentor, colleague and friend. We both cannot remember how we met, but we have known each other since my move to Australia in 2001. He has encouraged me and supported my development despite living in another country. And, I am not the only one to benefit from his expertise and his personable nature. There are many more people that are better off both as professionals, and more importantly as people, for having known Dave. When discussing Dave’s impact with a colleague, we agreed that we can take comfort in that he leaves us a legacy.

He and Fiona agonised about becoming academics in Fort Collins; it was certainly the right move. As has been shown by the community support after the accident, and only having been in their new location for just over six months. He was a very likeable and respected human being. Unfortunately too many students’ will now miss out on his pragmatic, sensible, fun-loving and scientific approach to theriogenology.

Dave was taken from us on 20th January 2020 in a tragic fatal car accident in Wyoming while on a family holiday trip from their new home in Fort Collins Colorado. 

Rest in peace colleague, mentor, supporter, and most importantly good friend. There are many people missing you Dave, and we are going to continue to do so. To his family, please accept our condolences. May your sorrow and loss be compensated by knowing you were blessed to have known and loved a truly fantastic and humble person.

Allan Gunn

Remembering Dave Hanlon BVMS(Hons) MVSc PhD DACT (Part 1)

David Hanlon was raised in Tasmania, and graduated from Murdoch University in 1992 with a Bachelor of Veterinary Medicine and Surgery. He then completed a 3yr residency and Masters Degree in large animal reproduction at Massey University, New Zealand. In 1996 he joined Matamata Veterinary Services. In 2001 he became a Diplomate of the American College of Theriogenologists via the alternate route under supervision of the practice D’sACT, and became a registered specialist in reproduction. In 2002 he was invited to lecture in equine reproduction at Cornell University and was the resident veterinarian at Cornell’s Equine Research Park. 

David became a partner at Matamata Veterinary Services where he provided specialist equine reproduction services. He became an adjunct Associate Professor in Theriogenology at both North Carolina State University and Louisiana State University. He was also an adjunct faculty member of Massey University. Under his, and his lovely wife Fiona Hollinshead’s guidance, the practice also trained Massey veterinary undergraduates, interns, and residents in theriogenology. At least two have attained DACT and specialist status.

Dave completed his PhD entitled “Reproductive performance and the transition period of Thoroughbred mares in New Zealand: Evidence and implications for future alternative management strategies.” whilst in practice. Undoubtedly a phenomenal achievement to obtain both DACT and PhD qualifications whilst in practice. He was continually involved in research projects with collaborators, and was a valued contributor to industry pharmaceutical developments such as the ‘Cue Mare’. He regularly contributed to CPD courses, presented at conferences, and regularly published in the scientific and lay literature, as well as being an expert witness to legal cases around the world. 

Dave has also been President, and an active committee member, of the Australian and New Zealand College of Veterinary Scientists. Importantly he was an integral player in revitalising the regressing reproduction chapter.

This is undoubtedly an impressive CV. But, in reality this is nothing without mentioning Dave Hanlon the person. Dave was the Father, no Dad, of Will, Harry and Oscar, and the loving husband of Fiona Hollinshead. 

Dave had a wonderful sense of humour and an infectious snigger in his laugh. He was undoubtedly a very intelligent man, but was never arrogant and always willing to listen to others points of view; as long as they were genuine. Whilst it might be easy to say that he didn’t suffer fools, it is probably more correct to say that he did not tolerate foolishness and ignorance. Arrogance and narcissism were his top dislikes, and he would expertly avoid further unnecessary contact with people illustrating those traits. But, never in a nasty way and always with appropriate respect.